Well before the COVID-19 pandemic, infections of different types have been major issues at nursing homes in the United States. With alarming regularity, residents of nursing homes die from preventable infections that arise as a result of negligent care. Indeed, the number of people who dies each year as the result of nursing home abuse and neglect persistently is alarming.
Shocking news reports have been coming out of metro-Atlanta during the past week about the Westbury Nursing Home in Conyers, an Atlanta bedroom community. As of the third week of January, nearly two dozen resident of the Westbury Nursing Home had died as a result of infections.
In the case of these particular residents, COVID-19 was the hazardous pathogen that caused the deaths of these residents. Some might immediately respond that nursing care facilities have been hotbeds for COVID-19 infection and deaths. While this certainly is true, the Westbury Nursing Home has been repeatedly warned by state health inspectors that the facility was not doing near enough to protect its residents from dangerous infections. These warnings began before the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, nursing home residents were at risk for an array of potentially deadly infections. Time and again, nursing home neglect issues resulted in residents unnecessarily contracting these infections. In other words, had nursing home staff members been reasonably diligent, many residents who ended up afflicted with a dangerous infection could have avoided the condition all together.
Examples of the infections jeopardizing the health and even lives of nursing home residents include:
- C. diff
- Elder influenza
- Elder UTIs
- Elder scabies
Arguably, when a skilled care facility routinely fails to properly protect its residents from exposure to harmful viruses and bacteria, such conduct constitutes more than mere negligence. Of course, elder neglect is a serious issue. With that said, when a facility like the Westbury Nursing repeatedly fails to comply with directives from health inspectors regarding infection prevention practices, that conduct fairly can be said to rise to the level of reckless behavior and even nursing home abuse.
Currently, 26 states in the United States have governors who’ve signed executive orders or legislatures that have passed laws making it challenging for nursing home residents and their families to pursue an otherwise lawful claim for injuries or wrongful deaths stemming from nursing home abuse and nursing home negligence when it appears to arise from conditions associated with COVID-19. Having said that, these types of limitations do not impact injuries and deaths associated with nursing home negligence associated with the failure to properly protect residents against other types of potentially deadly infectious diseases.
The complexities of the law associated with protecting the legal rights of elderly people who may be the victims of nursing home neglect or nursing home abuse underscores the need for capable legal assistance when these types of situations arise. There are nursing home negligence and nursing home abuse lawyers who have broad experience in dealing with injuries and wrongful death arising out of infections of different types that unnecessarily spread in nursing homes.
Oftentimes, family members are called upon to protect older loved ones in nursing homes. If you’ve a loved one who has been the victim of nursing home negligence or nursing home abuse, the legal team at The Doan Law Firm is here for you.
A nationwide law firm, we’ve offices located across the country, including in Atlanta at:
3340 Peachtree Road
Atlanta, Georgia 30326
No matter where you are located in the United States, a nursing home abuse lawyer from our firm is only a phone call away at (800) 349-0000. Our nursing home abuse hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, including all major holidays.
We can schedule an initial consultation with a nursing home abuse lawyer at any one of our offices. In addition, we can arrange a virtual case evaluation with you online. There is never a charge for an initial consultation.
The Doan Law Firm makes an attorney fee pledge to you. We never charge an attorney fee unless we win for you.